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An Analysis on Effecting Factors of

Ultra-violet Imaging Appliance in Corona Discharge


Xiao Hana, Ning Yanga, Shuai Yuana, Jiangang Bia
a
China Electric Power Research Institute, Beijing, P.R.China 100192

ABSTRACT

In this paper, the operating principle of daylight UV imagers was introduced first, emphasizing the SBUV(solar blind
UV) technology, which utilizes the fact that ultra violet between 240nm~280nm is being absorbed by the ozone so that
signals detected on earth in this spectral range originate on earth. And then several influencing factors were explained,
including observation distance, observing angle, imager gain settings and environmental conditions. Experimental data
measured in the UHV(ultra high-voltage) DC converter station in Changzhi, Shanxi, China were analyzed using
SRA(single regression analysis) method, and mathematical equations with acceptable deviation were calculated, with
simulating curves plotted. The results show that environmental conditions including humidity and temperature,
observation distance and imager gain settings all contribute to the measuring result, exhibiting as exponential function
and convex function respectively. Concluded from the above analysis and calculation, observing conditions of a clear
observing angle at the same observation distance with mediate gain settings on days of low humidity were
recommended. This conclusion may guide further ultra-violet imaging appliance in high-voltage electrical devices
corona discharge sensing.
Keywords: Remote sensing, ultra-violet imaging, corona discharge, on-line monitoring, high-voltage apparatus.

1. INTRODUCTION
Corona discharge is a luminous partial discharge from conductors and insulators due to ionization of the air, where the
electrical field exceeds a critical value, and indicates defect, incorrect design or bad installation workmanship, causing
power loss and damage to surrounding hardware[1]. Solar blind ultra-violet (SBUV) imaging is a new remote sensing
technique utilizing the fact that ultra violet between 240-280nm is being absorbed by the ozone so that signals detected
on earth in this spectral range originate on earth, thus detecting corona discharge emitted from high-voltage
equipment[2]. With the benefits of high anti-interference ability, high locating accuracy and high sensitivity, SBUV is
more and more commonly used in power system online monitoring[3-5]. However, UV imaging is influenced by
environmental conditions and measurements settings due to outdoor usage[6]. In this paper, several influencing factors
were analyzed, including observation distance, observing angle, imager gain settings and environmental conditions.

2. SOLAR BLIND ULTRA-VIOLET TECHNOLOGY


The wavelength of UV light distributes between 10nm ~ 400nm, and concentrates above 290nm near earth surface due to
the absorption of atmospheric ozone area. UV light is called solar blind area if its wavelength is below 280nm and
irradiance less than 10-13W/m2[7]. UV imager consists of optical system, filters, sensors, analysis system and display
system as shown in Fig. 1, in which the optical system visualizes corona discharge with the function of filters, then the
sensors provide optical-electric conversion. An analysis of light intensity is conducted by the analysis system, controlling
the whole detector,and the display system shows corona picture.

International Symposium on Optoelectronic Technology and Application 2014: Optical Remote Sensing Technology
and Applications, edited by Anatoli G. Borovoi, Dong Liu, Proc. of SPIE Vol. 9299, 929905
2014 SPIE CCC code: 0277-786X/14/$18 doi: 10.1117/12.2069484

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17
Visible

Q__) L Analysis
-s Display
Systea

, /`
UV
awed
k) i
Optical Filter Sensor
System
Figure 1. Principle of UV imaging detection
The light intensity of corona discharge in the "solar blind area" is very weak, therefore intensified CCD (ICCD) is
usually used as UV sensor to multiply electrons and adjust gain settings[11]. Currently there are two types of UV light
intensity statistical analysis, one is measuring the UV photon pulses and the other is measuring the UV power[12].

3. EFFECTING FACTORS ON UV IMAGING


In this paper, experiments are carried out with SuperB UV imager from Israeli OFIL company, which counts photon
pulses. UV imaging results are influenced by observation distance, imager gain settings and environmental
conditions[13].
3.1 Influence of observation distance
Corona discharges from electrical apparatus usually appear as light point sources. When using the UV imager, the lens
receiving surface can be assumed to be perpendicular to the propagation direction of UV pulses, as show in Fig. 2.

Point Source

III
dS

receivin urface

Figure 2. UV illumination at the receiving plane


Denote the luminous intensity of the point source by I, the distance between the point source and a receiving area dS by
l, and the angle between face normal of dS and the incident ligh is 0 as depicted in Fig. 2. According to Bouguer-
Lambert law[15], the luminous intensity I is:

I = I 0 e l (1)

in which I 0 indicates the luminous intensity at the point of l = 0 , and is the absorption coefficient of UV pulses in
air.
Therefore, the counting rate of UV photons that enters area dS is
N 0 l
N= e . (2)
l2

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In which N 0 is a constant irrelevant to observation distance.
Therefore, the UV count rate decreases as the observation distance increases.
3.2 Influence of gain settings
Within a certain range, the output of ICCD is in linear with gain[16], and with increased ICCD gain, the output of
electron multiplier is enlarged, and the detected photon pulses are increased, improving detection sensitivity overall.
However, as the ICCD gain increases, its output gradually steps out of linear area, and the shot noise of UV imager will
be amplified [17]. Then the target images may be interfered by noise images or even overwhelmed, mistaking photon
counts and resulting in low sensitivity [18].
3.3 Influence of environmental conditions
UV imaging is usually applied on electrical apparatus in outdoor environments with various condition changes such as
ambient temperature, atmospheric pressure, humidity, causing influence in two aspects, on the generation of corona
discharge and the discharge quantity as well as on the propagation of UV pulse.
As temperature rises or atmospheric pressure falls, the dielectric strength of air decreases, resulting in corona inception
voltage drop and discharge quantity increase[19] . Meanwhile, with the decrease in air density, absorption coefficient of
UV radiation in air decreases, promoting UV pulse propagation .
The impact of changes in humidity on UV imaging results is more complex. Although moisture in air absorbs free
electrons, restraining the development of the ionosphere and corona generation [12]. However when the humidity
continues to increase, the droplets formed on electrode surface will increase partial conductor surface field strength[20] .
Also the absorption coefficient of UV radiation in air increases with the rise of humidity, restricting the propagation of
the UV pulse.

4. EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS AND ANALYSIS


In this paper, a SuperB UV imager from Israel OFIL company was employed to detect corona discharge occurred in a
1000kV substation, and the above mentioned influentials were studied.
4.1 Detection under different observation distances
In this UV imaging detection of a 1000kV substation, two test lines were selected. Denote the point exact below corona
discharge as origin and then tests were carried out along north and east directions. Select test points every 5m along
north to 50m and along east to 35m as shown in Fig. 3. The corona discharge happened at a height of 6.5m, and the UV
imager was placed at the height of 1.5m.

North
Corona Discharge

,,,,- ... -.w - .. ...... -..1.-


r 35m

4
.

i
Figure 3. Test arrangement diagram (Top view)
Some of the captured UV images are listed in Fig. 4, and the relationship between counting rate of UV photons and
observation distance is depicted in Fig. 5.

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the counting rates of discharge are required to be compared or traced and monitored, then the detection should be
conducted at the same observation distance with a clear observing angle.
The experimental verified theoretical analysis, and provided a guideline for standardizing UV imaging techniques
applied in corona discharge detection from high- voltage electrical apparatus.

REFERENCES

[1] Xiao D. P., He W., Xie P. J., et al, "Study on corona discharge characteristic of high voltage transmission line
and calculation of its electromagnetic radiation field," Power System Technology 31(21), 52-55(2007).
[2] Dai L. B., "Application of UV imaging technology in high voltage equipment live detection," Automation of
Electric Power System 27(20), 97-98(2003).
[3] Wang S. H., Lu F. C., Li Y. Q., et al, "Application of UV imaging method to corona discharge detection in
substation," High Voltage Apparatus 46(2), 15-19(2010).
[4] Lei H. C., Zang C. Y., Jiang Z. L., et al, "Detecting breakage defect of post insulator with ultraviolet imaging
method," High Voltage Apparatus 45(5), 87-91(2009).
[5] Ding G. C., Li W., Wang L. F., et al, "Application of ultraviolet detection technology for corona discharge to
abnormal on-line infrared detections," High Voltage Apparatus 46(10), 42-44(2010).
[6] Ye H. S., Lei H. C., Zang C. Y., et al, "Study on UV imaging detection characteristics of corona discharge
under non-uniform electric field," High Voltage Apparatus 46(1), 35-39(2010).
[7] Yen J., "Intentionally short-range communications exploratory development plan," ADA253456 San Diego:
Head Electro-Optic Device Branch, (1992).
[8] Tong X. X., Yuan Y. G., Wu L. G., et al, "Optical measurement in AC corona discharge," Opto-Electronic
Engineering 38(12), 63-68(2010).
[9] Zhang M. C., Song H. Y., Zhou Y., et al, "Calibration for SBUV corona detection system," Opto-Electronic
Engineering 37(4), 135-140(2010).
[10] Wang S. H., Mei B. X., Ye Z. Q., et al, "Ultraviolet imaging detection technology and application in corona
discharge detection of electrical equipment," High Voltage Apparatus 47(11), 92-97(2011).
[11] Huang X. B., Yang Y. M, "Design of discharge detection system based on photomultiplier tube for HV electric
equipments," High Voltage Apparatus 45(3), 28-31(2009).
[12] Zhang J. J., [High voltage discharge UV detection technology and application], China Electric Power Press,
Beijing, 150-160(2009).
[13] Hu W. T., Wang S. H., "Brief discussion on influence factors in detecting corona discharge by UV detector,"
North China Electric Power, 1, 6-9(2009).
[14] Yi M., [Optics], Higher Education Press, Beijing, 69-89(1999).
[15] Zhang H. X., [Physical optics], Tsinghua University press, Beijing, 55-70(2010).
[16] Zhao Y. H., Yan F., Zhou Y., et al, "Radiometric calibration of ultraviolet ICCD detector," Optics and Precision
Engineering 16(9), 1572-1576(2008).
[17] Wang S. H., Lv F. C., Li H. M., "Study on the AC Corona Characteristic Based on UV Imaging Parameter,"
High Voltage Apparatus 47(1), 29-33(2011).
[18] Yan F., Yu Z. J., Yu X., et al, "Noise analysis and processing of ultraviolet ICCD for corona detection," Optics
and Precision Engineering 14(4), 709-713(2006).
[19] Wu J. H., Fu W. P., Huo C. Y., "Influence of external condition on test result of ultraviolet imaging meter,"
Hebei Electric Power 28(5), 1-4(2009).
[20] He S., Zang C. Y., He J. J., et al, "Detecting contaminated insulators by the UV imaging technology," High
Voltage Apparatus 46(9), 74-77(2010).
[21] Yang X. L., Luo J. Q., Wang J. Bo., et al, "Measurement of the absorption coefficient of light by aerosol
particles in atmosphere," High Power Laser and Particle Beams 15(6), 543-546(2003).

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7000

6000

5000

4000

pn 3000

2000
U
1000

0
50 100 150 200 250 300

Gain

Figure 7. Relationship between counting rate and gain settings


4.3 Detection under different environmental conditions
The detection was conducted at the day 24th with a temperature of 10 and humidity of 50% and the day 25th with a
temperature of 5 and humidity of 76%. And 4 different discharge places were detected at similar observation distance,
the results from day 24th and day 25th are compared in Table 1, and UV images of discharge place #4 are shown in Fig.
8.
Tab.1 Comparison of results under different humidity(per min)

Date Humidity #1 #2 #3 #4
Day 24th 50% 4030 3820 2800 4110
Day 25th 76% 150 200 10 0
Outgoing line
Metal support Equaling ring The top of an
Discharge place of a main
structure on bus insulator
transformer
Discharge type intermittent Intermittent Intermittent intermittent

a) detected at Day 24th b) detected at Day 25th


Figure 8. UV images of discharge place #4

5. SUMMARY
Based on the theoretical analysis of influentials in UV imaging and test data obtained in field, it can be concluded as
below:
( 1 ) In the process of UV imaging detection, environmental conditions including humidity and temperature, observation
distance and imager gain settings all contribute to the measuring result;
( 2 ) With the increase of the observation distance, counting rate of UV photons falls. With the increase of gain settings,
counting rate of UV photons increases linearly approximately at first to an extrema, and then decreases gradually. With
the increase of humidity, the background noise exacerbate while corona discharge is restrained, and the counting rate of
UV photons drops.
( 3 ) Therefore, UV imaging detection should be carried out on sunny days with relatively small humidity. In the testing
process, appropriate gain should be set to restrict background noise and count more effective discharge photons. And if

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the counting rates of discharge are required to be compared or traced and monitored, then the detection should be
conducted at the same observation distance with a clear observing angle.
The experimental verified theoretical analysis, and provided a guideline for standardizing UV imaging techniques
applied in corona discharge detection from high- voltage electrical apparatus.

REFERENCES

[1] Xiao D. P., He W., Xie P. J., et al, "Study on corona discharge characteristic of high voltage transmission line
and calculation of its electromagnetic radiation field," Power System Technology 31(21), 52-55(2007).
[2] Dai L. B., "Application of UV imaging technology in high voltage equipment live detection," Automation of
Electric Power System 27(20), 97-98(2003).
[3] Wang S. H., Lu F. C., Li Y. Q., et al, "Application of UV imaging method to corona discharge detection in
substation," High Voltage Apparatus 46(2), 15-19(2010).
[4] Lei H. C., Zang C. Y., Jiang Z. L., et al, "Detecting breakage defect of post insulator with ultraviolet imaging
method," High Voltage Apparatus 45(5), 87-91(2009).
[5] Ding G. C., Li W., Wang L. F., et al, "Application of ultraviolet detection technology for corona discharge to
abnormal on-line infrared detections," High Voltage Apparatus 46(10), 42-44(2010).
[6] Ye H. S., Lei H. C., Zang C. Y., et al, "Study on UV imaging detection characteristics of corona discharge
under non-uniform electric field," High Voltage Apparatus 46(1), 35-39(2010).
[7] Yen J., "Intentionally short-range communications exploratory development plan," ADA253456 San Diego:
Head Electro-Optic Device Branch, (1992).
[8] Tong X. X., Yuan Y. G., Wu L. G., et al, "Optical measurement in AC corona discharge," Opto-Electronic
Engineering 38(12), 63-68(2010).
[9] Zhang M. C., Song H. Y., Zhou Y., et al, "Calibration for SBUV corona detection system," Opto-Electronic
Engineering 37(4), 135-140(2010).
[10] Wang S. H., Mei B. X., Ye Z. Q., et al, "Ultraviolet imaging detection technology and application in corona
discharge detection of electrical equipment," High Voltage Apparatus 47(11), 92-97(2011).
[11] Huang X. B., Yang Y. M, "Design of discharge detection system based on photomultiplier tube for HV electric
equipments," High Voltage Apparatus 45(3), 28-31(2009).
[12] Zhang J. J., [High voltage discharge UV detection technology and application], China Electric Power Press,
Beijing, 150-160(2009).
[13] Hu W. T., Wang S. H., "Brief discussion on influence factors in detecting corona discharge by UV detector,"
North China Electric Power, 1, 6-9(2009).
[14] Yi M., [Optics], Higher Education Press, Beijing, 69-89(1999).
[15] Zhang H. X., [Physical optics], Tsinghua University press, Beijing, 55-70(2010).
[16] Zhao Y. H., Yan F., Zhou Y., et al, "Radiometric calibration of ultraviolet ICCD detector," Optics and Precision
Engineering 16(9), 1572-1576(2008).
[17] Wang S. H., Lv F. C., Li H. M., "Study on the AC Corona Characteristic Based on UV Imaging Parameter,"
High Voltage Apparatus 47(1), 29-33(2011).
[18] Yan F., Yu Z. J., Yu X., et al, "Noise analysis and processing of ultraviolet ICCD for corona detection," Optics
and Precision Engineering 14(4), 709-713(2006).
[19] Wu J. H., Fu W. P., Huo C. Y., "Influence of external condition on test result of ultraviolet imaging meter,"
Hebei Electric Power 28(5), 1-4(2009).
[20] He S., Zang C. Y., He J. J., et al, "Detecting contaminated insulators by the UV imaging technology," High
Voltage Apparatus 46(9), 74-77(2010).
[21] Yang X. L., Luo J. Q., Wang J. Bo., et al, "Measurement of the absorption coefficient of light by aerosol
particles in atmosphere," High Power Laser and Particle Beams 15(6), 543-546(2003).

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